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Healthy Birth Your Way: Six Steps to a Safer Birth

Today marked the launch of Mother’s Advocate, a new site from InJoy Birth & Parenting Videos, and to kick things off, InJoy partnered with Lamaze International to produce a booklet and video set based on the Six Lamaze Healthy Birth Practices.  Both are freely downloadable from Mother’s Advocate.

Healthy Birth Your Way: Six Steps to a Safer Birth is designed around two principles.

Common sense tells us and research confirms that there are two tried-and-true ways to make birth as safe and healthy as possible.

  • First, make choices that support and assist your natural ability to give birth.
  • Second, avoid practices that work against your body’s natural ability, unless there is a good medical reason for them.

Print materials and video content correspond to each of Lamaze’s evidence-based Healthy Birth Practices.

  1. Let labor begin on its own.
  2. Walk, move around, and change positions throughout labor.
  3. Bring a loved one, friend, or doula for continuous support.
  4. Avoid interventions that are not medically necessary.
  5. Avoid giving birth on your back, and follow your body’s urges to push.
  6. Keep your baby with you—it’s best for you, your baby, and breastfeeding.

Childbirth educators and other birth professionals, please feel free to share ideas in the comments section about how to use these materials in your classes and other interactions with expectant women.

Lamaze News, Research for Advocacy , ,

  1. July 12th, 2009 at 12:28 | #1

    This is great news! I’ve already put the videos on my website, easily reached from a link on the main page. The process was simple; the “embed” code is already written and ready to add. Used this way, the videos are available even to someone who is “just looking” for childbirth education or doula support. Although I currently devote solid time in my classes to the six practices and distribute handouts, the new pdf files are more concise and inviting to read than the “old” ones. My students will be encouraged to take them home to read each one as they watch each video.

  2. avatar
    Sara Weisman
    August 13th, 2009 at 20:26 | #2

    I will be using these videos as homework for my students, and using some of the handouts in class. But I have to say that I was disappointed by the video of upright pushing – there is footage of women pushing in the typical hospital bed semi-reclining position. Why even show it?

  3. August 13th, 2009 at 22:05 | #3

    I’m interested to hear what others think. There are a few images of that position, but also the entire range including upright sitting, squatting, kneeling, standing, and side-lying. (I would have loved to see some hands and knees, which is the position I favored both as a birthing woman and as a midwife.) The most important factor safety-wise is for the woman not to be flat on her back. Hyperextending the woman’s legs is also harmful. I think the biggest harm of semi-sitting may be that it provides such ready access for an episiotomy – but that harm can be mitigated by choosing a provider who doesn’t use episiotomy (rate well under 5%). What else concerned you about showing this position?

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